February 9th, 2007

American Government

Unexpected antirant: US Citizenship and Immigration Services

Having vented frustrations in the past about the INS and the various incarnations since (INS was renamed BCIS [B=bureau (of)] and then re-renamed USCIS), I feel like I should perhaps provide some balance and do something I never really expected to be doing: Raving about them!

Specifically, my early INS experiences involved extremely slow processing, with delivery generally being some significant amount of time beyond the maximum time allowed by law (go figure) ... but right now USCIS seems to be consistently delivering early on many things. It's possible that they're just efficient in the limited scope of my type of application, but since it's all I know I can only assume that they've generally improved.

Significantly less than 3 months after our initial application for a greencard based on marriage was submitted, I have already got greencard status, and am only waiting for the physical card (but have a stamp in my passport which provides me the same status, including right to work and re-enter the country, already). That's pretty staggeringly good in my book.

They're delivering so fast on their greencard processing that they gave me greencard status without my needing the EAD (Employment Authorization Document) or Advance Parole (sinister-sounding, but what it means is the right to travel and come back in to the country) to tide me over.
Shin-Sen-Gumi Ramen

Amazing fudge! Can't get it. :( ... well, maybe ...

I just tried some fudge which I got at the Fancy Food Show in SF recently. It was really good[*]. I Googled for the name on the wrapper (Tradition Ste-Julie) and found the culprits: Confiserie Maison Ste-Julie ... but there's also this site, so I'm not sure which is the most useful.

No US distribution! Grr! Argh!

Oh, hmm, maybe I can get one of our Canadian sales engineers to pick some up for me before he comes to RWC next. :)

[*] Specifically, the ... I think cream fudge, or maybe it was maple. Not chocolate or some such thing. Chocolate is wonderful stuff, but I'm a fudge purist. Fudge doesn't need to be heavily flavoured or overpowered with chocolate. Simple is best.
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